Family Astropectinidae – Astropecten polyacanthus Muller and Troschel,1842
This species of starfish is not restricted to coral reefs, but occurs also in sandy areas along the east coast of the Australian mainland. At Heron Reef it is found in the deeper waters of the off-reef floor. It is recognized by the many conspicuous sharp spines along the body margin. The tube feet are characteristic of the order, to which this species belongs, in not possessing suckers at their tips. The diet of this animal is primarily shell-fish which occur within the sandy substrate.